Media Rumors

The latest turning point for Jody occurred during a road trip covering the Jazz last season. “I had the experience of what it’s like being the fat guy on an airplane,” he said. “I could tell the guy sitting next to me wasn’t thrilled, my gut spilling over onto him. I was miserable and it turned out it was a parallel to my life. “I was looking at 374 pounds at 45 years old. I was playing Russian roulette with my health. I got four kids, a wife… something had to change.”
Cunningham got to know and grew to love Artest throughout that time. At that point, he began serving in an expanded role as a producer at KHTK 1140 for several of the station’s hosts, including Grant Napear, Jim Kozimor and Carmichael Dave, while working as the station’s locker room reporter, far from the days of being a call screener for a golf show. Artest would frequently come into the studio for Carmichael Dave’s evening sports talk show. “I don’t know if that was therapeutic for him or if he just really enjoyed it,” Cunningham said. “You kind of saw a different side of an athlete and he was definitely different … He’d be the everyday guy with his quirks and his whatever that he would bring to work with him, but he was so passionate, he was such a hard worker,” said Cunningham, who remembers Artest getting a tooth knocked out during practice and not leaving, simply playing with the tooth in his hand.